Casting All Your Cares
Anxiety can creep up at times when we least expect it and quickly overwhelm us. Or it can take up unwelcome and apparently permanent residence in our lives. Few people do not experience it; it may take on different faces, and it may be propelled by different circumstances, but the issue itself is remarkably common.
When we face anxiety, we often try to ignore it by distracting our minds: “Let me listen to some music. Let me go for a drive. Let me run a mile. Let me do something… just let me run away!”
Notice, though, that in this verse, Peter does not say we are to deny, ignore, or flee from anxiety. Instead, we should be “casting all [our] anxieties on him.” The Greek word for “cast” here is a decisive, energetic action word. It could be used to describe throwing out a bag of trash. We don’t put painstaking effort into moving it; we simply grab it and hurl it into the bin. Likewise, instead of going through our days pressed down by the burden of anxiety, we are to throw it, hurl it, upon the Lord.
To do this requires us to give up our pride—our desire to control and triumph over circumstances. Being humble is what enables us to give our worries to God: humility’s presence leads to anxiety’s absence. When we attempt to take matters into our own hands through too much worry, we indicate an absence of humility; we’re more concerned with ourselves than with our heavenly Father, or we’re more determined to navigate our own course than to leave it to Him.
There will always be a circumstance that can make us anxious. Peter doesn’t address any specific circumstances, though; rather, he addresses the anxiety produced by the circumstances. Our anxiety itself is what we cast upon the Lord, doing exactly what the Bible says to do: humbling ourselves under God’s hand, saying, “My Father knows best. He cares for me better than I can care for myself.” When worries weigh us down, we can refuse to be burdened by them by calling to mind the Lord’s willingness to help.
You might be struggling through today, wondering how you’re going to make it to tomorrow. Perhaps it’s been a long time since you knelt beside your bed and truly cast your burden upon the only one who is able to carry it, saying, “God, I cannot live my life with this burden on my back. Take it. It’s Yours.”
If that’s you, don’t hesitate any longer. Cast your anxieties into the loving arms of your heavenly Father and experience the freedom and peace only He can provide.
How is God calling me to think differently?
How is God reordering my heart’s affections — what I love?
What is God calling me to do as I go about my day today?
Do Not Be Anxious
22And he said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. 23For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! 25And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?3 26If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest? 27Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin,4 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 28But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! 29And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried. 30For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31Instead, seek his5 kingdom, and these things will be added to you.
32“Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. 34For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
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